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SimSig Life 11/02/2024 at 13:42 #155284
HST125Scorton
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Now I hope all don’t think I’m having some sort of rant towards anyone here or to SimSig itself. After being with SimSig for over 12 years plenty of stuff has happened. The loader arrived, a new website, new simulations and much much more. I fully respect everything that is involved from the brilliant development & timetable team and the testing team to make sure everything is working as it should before anything gets released. I spend most of my time working on modern timetables for mostly North-West simulations you could state do 'I have anything better to do that sit doing timetables?' Well no sadly, after a work placement accident (Non Railway Related) I have two slipped discs in my neck and near to the bottom of my back. SimSig has helped me through my roughest patch of live when I wanted ‘To Leave’ the world. Many of you are so supportive along with my friends I’m still here. Things have improved and I have a much brighter life ahead so longs nothing else goes wrong with my body.

So, this is just a little collection of what I have on my back recently and I’ve mentioned it all below. I don’t expect the usual polite replies. We have seen many members come and go in the community including developers.

Development:
I asked to be apart of the Preston Simulation quite a few years back as I had quite a bit of information and contacts. I was successful and worked mostly on the 2018+ era where the electrification of the Blackpool North/Bolton Corridor routes had just been completed. During this time Blackburn King Street Depot opened which was added and the temporary depot at Leyland for Northern was added for when the Blackpool Route was closed. Things were steadily moving but for unreasoning everything stopped. Where is Preston now? Has anything happened to continue it? Nobody will know as its all-insider stuff which it’s probably best hidden. Maybe it popup out the blue one day who knows.

Freeware:
I completely understand that updates to the freeware sims are far in between while other work behind the scenes are taking place. I understand Payware comes before freeware and that we need people willing to look at them. Some freeware sims are deemed out of date or obsolete and not worth the time or effort to update them to modern standards of SimSig. Take Carlisle Simulation this once was an exe installer before going over to the loader, I was apart of testing the 2016 era and found a few issues that were resolved before it was released. Sadly, while this is on current version it’s desperately needing the rest of the updates to bring it up to standard. Maybe a complete new 2020s era now that so much has changed. Now while I mention this, there could be further issues with timetables meaning more time to sort them out.

Payware:
There are many brilliant payware sims available to enjoy. You can see the difference between these and the freeware versions. Obviously, we can understand more time and effort is involved greatly to produce these and I appreciate each and everyone involved with them.

For example, the following sims needs updates or a new era within them. These are what I picked out there could be more, but I’m trying not to be argumentative here.

Manchester Piccadilly a complex simulation could do with a completely new era for period 2022-2024 or and update to the 2018-2020 era to complete the rest of the electrification between Lostock Jn/Wigan North Western. PSR Changes etc.

Manchester North could do with more changes to reflect the all changes around including Miles Platting where the curve was increased to 50mph. Also, electrification between Manchester Victoria/Stalybridge, which then brings me on to Manchester East which needs a whole new era to reflect all the changes that have happened over the last couple of years.

Now a little North of the border stands Motherwell, this is very complex simulation where I’ve enjoyed many hours on with timetables from the 80s and 90s. A few years ago control moved to WSSC and recently Carstairs was remodelled along with a lot of other changes. This would need to be covered under a new era, but would it be practical? We all know Motherwell had its quirky bugs which were successfully squished which has resolved into a stable simulation which I still enjoy to date.

Aaron (AJRO) | Timetable Writer
Last edited: 11/02/2024 at 14:42 by HST125Scorton
Reason: None given

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SimSig Life 11/02/2024 at 15:12 #155285
TayViation
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Firstly, I just want to say thank you for the time you spend making timetables for us all to enjoy. I for one could not have the time and patience to develop a single timetable let alone the absolute production line you have going on, it really is incredible. Your work definitely is appreciated by the community so thank you for your contributions!

That said, I share your interest in not just new sims, but just new eras as some are slipping behind the times. Without any doubt, there is most definitely stuff going on behind the scenes as we've had numerous new simulations release in the past few months alone but I do want to support the idea of having older simulations revisited and bringing up to speed. And for the simulations we are looking forward to (to say the least), it'd be nice if we got updates now and again regarding their development; even if it's just talking about a certain area of the sim which may be difficult or interesting to make, a development diary would be excellent.


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SimSig Life 11/02/2024 at 15:13 #155286
agilchrist
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Aaron

I think you need to be realistic about the development of the sims, these people are using their free time to develop a sim, and the problem with letting people know what is in the pipeline is that it starts a never ending "is it ready" thread.
Just look at Bristol it was announced however the same developer built Crewe and that took nearly 18 months longer than expected as it was so complex. So the reason of saying nothing until the last minute is simply to stop the continual harasment about whether it is ready and do you really want the old reply of "it will be ready when its ready"

I think you also have to look at the true cost if this was to be developed to a commercial standard and the costs would be somewhere in the £80k upwards, there are only so many hours available to people here who give up their free time to be able to make changes and should they make changes then there is no additional revenue so what is the motive to do it, it is purely done for the love of SimSig nothing more. These are a niche market and there is a balance between new sims, updated and where the costs are for selling the sims.

If you look at other signalling simulations available in the market then you rarely see more eras adding without charge, you rarely see fixes or changes.

With regards the freeware, should there really be freeware these days ? I feel that there should be a charge for the core of the system as this has to be maintained and with that the users get x free sims ? It is a thought but it then costs the users more !

There are more than 100 sims now, your concentrating on a few with your own points but there were about 12 sim updates released only the other day, it may not be what you want but it is not like people are doing nothing.

With regards to Motherwell, would you happily pay for a new sim ? how about changes to all the other sims around to chaing it in to those whilst they are in development, how would you join them as boundaries may change ? how long would you wait ? how much would you pay ?

Not expecting those question to be answered by anyone, just pondering other thoughts which play a large part in decision making.

I always advocate telling you what is in development, but the backlash is relentless from some users, today I am currently doing an alpha test of Wallsall but quite honestly I have no idea of any timescale when this could be ready it is early stages but it will get to the users at some point and its a great little single player sim with two panels. So now you know something.

Blessed are the true believers, for only they shall walk the Path, and they shall be welcomed unto the realm of the Ori and made as one with Them.
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SimSig Life 11/02/2024 at 15:20 #155287
flabberdacks
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What drove you to post this?

Developing and updating sims is a hobby, we work on them if and when we can. Doing a sim properly takes an extroadinary amount of time, effort and patience.

Updating released sims for new eras tends to break established timetables, creating so much work for everyone involved that it's rarely worth the effort.

Everyone does their best for this small community.

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SimSig Life 11/02/2024 at 15:34 #155288
HST125Scorton
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Thank you all, as I say it's not a having a go its more of what could be done situation. I fully appreciate that work/home/family life comes first before SimSig and I get that. I'm not asking 'When it's Ready' here nor asking if there was to be development updates as I agree it becomes tedious with people constantly asking. I have been wildly thinking about SimSig over the last few days and how it could maybe improve as were all a grateful community.

I'm not looking at other signalling simulations as SimSig to me has to be best out of all of them. I would happily pay for another Modern Motherwell as it would be worth the money, time and effort that was put into it a bit like Crewe. I know some simulations been done can take a long time from start to finish and I appreciate that always. It's not just the development but the time making timetables to go with the simulations.

I know if adding new eras to current simulations may cause further issues further down the line like timetables, which in turn become a pain to solve. If an era was added would a timetable be needed if users make timetables themselves?

Ok I agree a little to the freeware bit should there be any? In this day and age most if not everything is payware.

Any updates released are very welcome even if it's what I was expecting.

Aaron (AJRO) | Timetable Writer
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SimSig Life 11/02/2024 at 15:56 #155289
AndyNTH
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HST125Scorton in post 155284 said:
I completely understand that updates to the freeware sims are far in between while other work behind the scenes are taking place. I understand Payware comes before freeware and that we need people willing to look at them.
Why should someone who has the skills to develop software, an ability which demands large amounts of money on the job market, do so for free when they know they can charge for it and people will buy it? It is unrealistic in my view. Free simulations exist to introduce people to the product - it is unreasonable to expect people to work for free to produce new ones when the criteria of 'allowing people to have a go' is fulfilled already.

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SimSig Life 11/02/2024 at 18:25 #155290
jc92
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With regards to eras, I dont think sims NEED new eras. Ultimately they're sold as seen representing a given time period. Theres nothing stopping a new version being produced at a later date, or indeed an older era being provided but I can't say its compulsory.

There are a handful of sims where the described era doesn't match the layout (no exchange sidings/duddeston C.S. on new street so no ECS for the older era, Dallam RMT present in 1972 era on warrington, original sidings missing and arpley doesnt have the line to manchester available), but that's a separate issue to the one I beleive you're describing.

"We don't stop camborne wednesdays"
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SimSig Life 11/02/2024 at 20:57 #155292
simple68
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jc92 in post 155290 said:
With regards to eras, I dont think sims NEED new eras. Ultimately they're sold as seen representing a given time period. Theres nothing stopping a new version being produced at a later date, or indeed an older era being provided but I can't say its compulsory.

There are a handful of sims where the described era doesn't match the layout (no exchange sidings/duddeston C.S. on new street so no ECS for the older era, Dallam RMT present in 1972 era on warrington, original sidings missing and arpley doesnt have the line to manchester available), but that's a separate issue to the one I beleive you're describing.
Yes they do need new era's Kings Cross, as was said above is a freeware sim as an introduction. Fantastic sim but needs updating. I think there is a thread somewhere about people happy to pay for an updated version so we can use the latest timetables. Keep it the way it is but updated version could be paid for. Si

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SimSig Life 11/02/2024 at 21:12 #155294
jc92
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I think you're missing my point. Existing sims don't need updating for free. Perhaps I should've clarified that last point more clearly. Its unclear if Aaron was expecting free updates and additions or suggesting some sort of paid upgrade (not that I'm sure how you'd police people paying when they already hold licences).

If you buy a simulation of kings cross that claims to be accurate from 1977 to just prior to the thameslink tunnels then that's what's you're getting (yes I know it's freeware).

What people are asking for in a lot of cases isn't a simple addition of a ground frame or IBS signal, it's major work that involves a lot of era specific differences which always seem to cause headaches in D&T. Then you have areas like derby which was completely resignalled. Does derby NEED an update? No it doesn't. Would it be nice to have derby and Burton desks EMCC. Yes it would.

Asking for a more modern version of a sim is fine, but there's still plenty of missing locations to be completed, the aforementioned preston being one, bristol being another.

I personally feel completing the set and giving everyone something local is more important.

It's perhaps noting that the latest timetables are all user contributed as well, not a supported product.

"We don't stop camborne wednesdays"
Last edited: 11/02/2024 at 21:17 by jc92
Reason: None given

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SimSig Life 11/02/2024 at 23:40 #155295
bill_gensheet
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Undoubtably eras cause a lot of trouble ! (Motherwell) even just adding electrification. However a route does not have to be electrified to run the electric timetable on it - just have 'Metro' rated trains on diesel power. It is different track / signals that cause most of the problems though.

Eras may be easier done when looking back a few years to see which changes can be combined sensibly - and reduce the number of actual eras while still running any one years' timetable adequately. The difficulty with the Manchester area is that it is such a moving target at present. Simp;ly not practical to keep up with each small change adding ever more eras to 4 sims.

As an example of combining eras simply we have Stourbridge where the 'early' vs '2007' eras differing only in collaring and the timetabling locations that are enabled. It has no different track which is where eras get far more difficult. Is 'early' totally accurate to any one date ? No, but it allows remarkably old timetables with little by way of compromises.

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SimSig Life 12/02/2024 at 02:12 #155298
TUT
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Firstly I'd like to say I thought the OP was extremely reasonable and respectful and I thought his post was very much in the spirit of wanting to improve something he very much enjoys. I thought he went out of his way not to even appear critical, much less harsh and I don't think there is or was any need for defensiveness.

But I disagree with all of it :p

To be clear, I completely understand the desire for up to date sims that model the railway as it is today. I get the desire people presumably have to play sims that simulate the trains they can, even do, ride on every day. Naturally, as this is a sim, people like to imagine themselves really controlling the real trains they really take to work each morning. I understand that point of view.

Myself, I'm not really that interested in an updated King's Cross or an updated anything else for that matter. Partly that might be my own prejudices in favour of the older railway, sure, but indeed many of our sims, for a variety of reasons, advertise themselves as simulations of PSBs and not of the creeping menace of the ROCs. I don't personally think one has any right to expect a simulation of York ROC when one downloads King's Cross PSB anymore than one should expect a TVSC Didcot simulation when buying Oxford PSB. I understand some buyers might not realise the difference at time of purchase but PSB sims should not be expected to simulate ROCs as a rule. (I'm aware that this doesn't apply to Carlisle for example but one day one fears it will). If King's Cross for example were to be updated to reflect what now exists controlled from York ROC what would happen to the PSB sim? Would it be the same as what happened to Sheffield where the ROC sim replaced the PSB one. I understand that there were only slight changes there but not none. I shouldn't like to see a gradual loss of older sims in this way.

Secondly, as we know changes big and small happen all the time and with so many sims now available trying to keep them all up to date is like fighting a hydra. As soon as Kings Cross is updated people will want an updated Peterborough and West Hampstead to go with it and Swindon and Oxford and Edge Hill and Lime Street and on and on and then there'll be another change somewhere on King's Cross and another update will be expected, and an updated Crewe and Edinburgh and on and on and I would much rather time be spent on the missing pieces of the puzzle than constantly trying to keep up with the endless changes on the network many of which just aren't worth the effort let alone additional monies. And then what's the use of an era without a timetable to go with it? So new timetables would always be needed to get any value. They wouldn't be nice to have, they would be the point of the update

Much more than that I would honestly rather see the unsupported sims brought back. I'd like to play sims like Scunthorpe and Cambridge and so on, personally, and every so often there's a thread with somebody else asking hopefully how to play them. Again I'm not criticising anyone, but for me personally, my philosophy on life is to look after what I have and keep that shiny instead of chasing shiny shiny new stuff. It seems a bit of a shame that Southampton remains a memory when Basingstoke has just been released. Obviously that might not make the best business sense and everyone likes a new toy, but make do and mend say I, waste not want not and all that! It also seems a shame to let even loader sims like King's Cross become ineligible for even fixes. Personally I think fixing paid sims (and obviously Kings Cross is not paid) should be a high priority and should not be done rotationally. If somebody identifies a problem with a product they have paid good money for it really ought to get fixed as soon as practicable and not when it's that sim's turn. My preference would be to keep the roster of sims small enough that we can keep them maintained to the highest possible standards if it is the case that we have so many sims now that older sims will have to wait their turn to get fixed.

If I were to have a criticism of SimSig I suppose I would say that it occupies a difficult kind of middle ground. It is not cheap and it certainly isn't free. It has customers and it is worked on by a closed group of people who are financially compensated. It can't claim to be a pure passion project worked on by volunteers where everyone's freely giving up their time for the good of all of us who get to enjoy it for free. It's a commercial product, and the prices are hardly cheap.

But it is niche and a lot of people involved are volunteers or certainly don't make their living from SimSig. They are giving up their time for modest or no financial compensation, they are players, they visit the forum, they go to meets, they are doing it for the love of it.

And here's the problem. If you don't like your toaster and you say it's rubbish and it burns the toast you don't expect someone from Russell Hobbs to get offended and upset because they're just an employee of a big company. And you don't expect to get attacked for criticising the toaster by members of the Russell Hobbs community because people understand that you've paid hard earned money for the toaster and you expect it to be good value. And with SimSig I think it is small and it is niche and it can be misunderstood by new users and old users and there's nothing wrong with defending something you enjoy. But people who pay money for a product should be able to complain about a shortcoming it may have in their obviously wrong and misguided opinion and people involved in the business that has taken that money from that customer probably shouldn't take those obviously silly criticisms personally to the point where people feel unable to suggest improvements or even make negative comments.

I also have no understanding of how SimSig operates and I don't need to, but it does seem a bit of an issue for the paying customer that some sims, such as Peak District for example, are, as I understand it, assigned to individuals. And we've seen, for example with discussions regarding subscription models (which I don't personally want) how seemingly authors are paid a kind of commission. And presumably there's a whole host of legal reasons behind this and I'm sure it is indeed the best and fairest way of dealing with something like this where obviously SimSig can't afford a huge team of salaried employees. But for the user it seems a bit of a problem that (and I think Carlisle had this issue as well once upon a time) some sims like Peak District are seemingly unable to be worked on by anyone else. And that's not great for us because we pay SimSig for a SimSig product and we kind of expect SimSig to keep its products up and running and working for us for as long as it's in business. And as SimSig sims can only be run on SimSig and sim authors can't really take their sims they've worked on elsewhere it seems to me that one way or another there should be mechanisms for SimSig to keep its customers' products working. I'm sure that's not a trivial problem to solve, but it's not really ideal that peak District now makes a very poor choice as a sim to host as nobody who doesn't already have it can play it and it won't be supported in any way, unlike other sims that cost the same and as would reasonably have been expected at time of purchase. I'm sure it's all perfectly above board and SimSig has done nothing wrong, but it relects far worse on the brand IMO than a gap where Basingstoke now is or a simulation of Oxford PSB that doesn't simulate Didcot TVSC, or, much to my dismay, Oxford Station North SB.

Regards donationware I don't think they shouldn't be provided, I think they're a good hook and they've already been made, but if they are provided they should be kept working and shouldn't be allowed to rot. I don't think the loader needs a price tag as it's pretty pointless without the sims, except that it's useful to try it out and explore the sims you don't own. I probably wouldn't have started playing SimSig if the loader and a few decent sims hadn't been free, and I certainly think I've been turned into a decent earner for SimSig thanks to that.

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SimSig Life 12/02/2024 at 03:58 #155300
drenahmeti22
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I don't usually comment on threads on here, even less when they're opinion posts, but seeing some replies on here, I have to give my tuppence.

I agree with the view that some areas of SimSig regarding development etc are pretty insular, and updates are few and far between.
Some people view this as a "good thing", as it "stops people nagging" about when sims are ready etc. However, it would be nice to have a bit of transparency of at least what sims are in development on a separate page (so I don't have to trawl through posts made 4 years ago to find a throwaway comment about a sim being developed), as well as the respective timelines for sims that are known to be in development, such as Reading, Bristol (loader), etc. Even a simple "in development" would be appreciated; I'm not asking for an exact date/time of release to the millisecond ;)
[@GeoffM, if you're reading this, would it be possible to show the "behind the scenes" of how a sim is build up from a blank canvas, developed, and tested? I understand your limitations if not. I live for the little snippets of sims released on the forums, much appreciated!]

This shouldn't be construed to be a negative or an attack on individuals or SimSig at all, because I understand the basis behind all the risks and commercial agreements there are putting practically exact replicas of real-life signalling setups on the internet [for god's sake, Hitachi Information and Control Systems Europe Limited own the software behind SimSig!], but the "pile-ons" that occur when you dare criticise anything really shouldn't be happening! (Please don't remove my licenses *laughs*). Some of the replies to this thread fail to grasp OPs intentions, and they are representative of the aforementioned insular mentality. Lighten up, and learn to take some constructive criticism; no-one is saying the work that goes on here is under-appreciated, under-valued, or of bad quality. I can only speak for myself - knowing a bit about programming and a bit more about the actual data input into SimSig - I can only wonder as to how the development team manage to do all this, while juggling real-life jobs!

Honestly, my only gripe is removing sims such as Peak District (supposedly "obsolete"), and the .exe sims without notice, and expecting nothing to come of it. I personally really loved playing Peak District (it's such a quirky little sim!), and I have a feeling it was internal politics that killed it off...

I have to say though, for a niche simulator community to be this active, and constantly developed up to practically real-life standards is incredible, and I can personally attest to the fact that SimSig has led to at least 5 of my friends becoming real-life signallers.


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SimSig Life 13/02/2024 at 05:03 #155315
flabberdacks
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drenahmeti22 in post 155300 said:
However, it would be nice to have a bit of transparency of at least what sims are in development
It's not an unreasonable request on the surface of it.

I don't speak on behalf of the others, but in my opinion it's not done because we're all volunteering our spare time to create the sims and timetables - schedules change, family events take priority, forecasts are pushed back with little notice etc.

I don't want to create a situation where people get excited that something is coming, only for the project to hit a roadblock (either for technical or personal reasons) and it be put on the shelf. Or for a sim to just take far longer than expected due to the complexity of it, such as has happened with one I'm doing now.

Every effort is made to rigorously test sims and timetables, to ensure your money is well spent at the time. It's just difficult to forecast when they'll be ready.

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SimSig Life 13/02/2024 at 09:08 #155316
andi
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I wonder how many people here want to help out but donʼt know how? I would like to try, and I doubt Iʼm the only one.

I understand why the devs donʼt want to open up development to everyone, but maybe something on the wiki explaining some of the things we could do to contribute beyond just buying simulations would be useful.

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SimSig Life 13/02/2024 at 11:28 #155317
HST125Scorton
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Thanks to all that have replied here I have gone through them, some are a little defensiveness yes and some may agree. I can take that.

I wasn't very clear what I was rambling on about regards to the simulations. Difficult to say as I've had a rough couple of days with my mental heath and it may seem I was taking it out on SimSig when I wasn't. SimSig to me is my life as well as my own personal life. I can spend hours and hours on sims, creating timetables etc etc.

As we have freeware simulations to help new people into the SimSig world, I'm not here asking for updated eras on these more if the bug fixes could be done as an when developers have the time e.g For Example Carlisle which has been waiting quite a long while.

I know there has to be balance of personal life and SimSig life so I don't expect to have anything done at the click of the finger situation. When bugs need squashing, testing has to commence to make sure its all ok and that the simulations is going be ok forward pending release.

With regards to Development of Sims that are in development, I'd rather have this behind closed doors and be a surprise when released, it will save the hassle of having the forum clogged up with the usual 'is it ready?' situations. Unless otherwise mentioned on the forum what's due to be released for example Doncaster or Basingstoke etc.

A lot of hard work does go into SimSig and the Development of the simulations and timetables and as I say I really appreciate this. In my eyes it's money well spend in purchasing them.

Now I got a little mixed up regarding new eras into current simulations. I should of stated a little more that I would like to see new sims featuring the newer updated eras. Take Manchester Piccadilly/North/East and all the changes for the ongoing electrification, speed changes and other bits n bobs. Manchester ROC for an example I wouldn't mind seeing the Blackpool Desk (Local to me once at Poulton-le-Fylde) and the updated desks from Weaver Jn to Liverpool Lime Street, or to York ROC to see the workstations of Hebden Bridge, Huddersfield etc. These would be great additions to the SimSig Family. But as I said these take time to develop between Personal Time and SimSig time which I'm grateful for.

Aaron (AJRO) | Timetable Writer
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SimSig Life 13/02/2024 at 19:10 #155321
Guts
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flabberdacks in post 155315 said:
drenahmeti22 in post 155300 said:
However, it would be nice to have a bit of transparency of at least what sims are in development
It's not an unreasonable request on the surface of it.

I don't speak on behalf of the others, but in my opinion it's not done because we're all volunteering our spare time to create the sims and timetables - schedules change, family events take priority, forecasts are pushed back with little notice etc.

I don't want to create a situation where people get excited that something is coming, only for the project to hit a roadblock (either for technical or personal reasons) and it be put on the shelf. Or for a sim to just take far longer than expected due to the complexity of it, such as has happened with one I'm doing now.

Every effort is made to rigorously test sims and timetables, to ensure your money is well spent at the time. It's just difficult to forecast when they'll be ready.
I think this exactly what we need. If there’s a delay, I think it’s fair to just tell everyone. I remember when Geoff had his kids, he told us, when he moved to the States he’s told us. It doesn’t have to be your private business but, just a ‘we’re testing level crossings, it’s taking a while’ or ‘some numpty gave me the wrong lengths’ would be appreciated by all. Nothing wrong with jovial comments or updates
I personally believe most people on this forum are grown up enough to see these reasons whatever they may be as genuine. And those that don’t will need to learn patience.

The biggest thing I see and agree here is, to not take criticisms personally. It’s an observation and opinion, it could be right but it’s not a criticism. I think most people who comment are just pointing out something that they’ve seen as an error. We have moderators on here to deal with anyone who’s not playing ball.

My other opinion is that new eras for existing sims should be paid for. Discount if you own it or full price brand new. That’s just my humble opinion

I’ve got other suggestions but I’m gonna leave there.

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SimSig Life 14/02/2024 at 03:24 #155327
GeoffM
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andi in post 155316 said:
I wonder how many people here want to help out but donʼt know how? I would like to try, and I doubt Iʼm the only one.

I understand why the devs donʼt want to open up development to everyone, but maybe something on the wiki explaining some of the things we could do to contribute beyond just buying simulations would be useful.
I will try to write something up in the Wiki about the process.

One thing we do sometimes find out when we release a previous-unannounced sim is that somebody pops up and says things along the lines of "I am/was a signaller there!". Certainly that situation is a negative that could be remedied by announcing forthcoming simulations - if not early on, then at least when we get to an advanced state in the timeline.

FWIW my interests lie east of London in one direction, and further southwest in the other. Probably not too hard to work out. ;-)

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SimSig Life 14/02/2024 at 08:53 #155328
kbarber
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GeoffM in post 155327 said:
<snip>
FWIW my interests lie east of London in one direction, and further southwest in the other. Probably not too hard to work out. ;-)
Oh goody... the 1949 Liverpool St - Shenfield boxes (complete with electric cooker switches at LV and BG) :-))))

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SimSig Life 14/02/2024 at 10:23 #155329
ajax103
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kbarber in post 155328 said:
GeoffM in post 155327 said:
<snip>
FWIW my interests lie east of London in one direction, and further southwest in the other. Probably not too hard to work out. ;-)
Oh goody... the 1949 Liverpool St - Shenfield boxes (complete with electric cooker switches at LV and BG) :-))))
Elizabeth Line...

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SimSig Life 14/02/2024 at 11:16 #155330
bill_gensheet
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GeoffM in post 155327 said:
andi in post 155316 said:
I wonder how many people here want to help out but donʼt know how? I would like to try, and I doubt Iʼm the only one.

I understand why the devs donʼt want to open up development to everyone, but maybe something on the wiki explaining some of the things we could do to contribute beyond just buying simulations would be useful.
I will try to write something up in the Wiki about the process.

One thing we do sometimes find out when we release a previous-unannounced sim is that somebody pops up and says things along the lines of "I am/was a signaller there!". Certainly that situation is a negative that could be remedied by announcing forthcoming simulations - if not early on, then at least when we get to an advanced state in the timeline.

FWIW my interests lie east of London in one direction, and further southwest in the other. Probably not too hard to work out. ;-)
Another benefit would be getting 'user' timetables happening alongside the sim. While new sims will get the 3 GHD timetables (reasons permitting), those are often not that different when it comes to exercising the layout and inevitably much bug discovery comes from getting those timetables to run.

Where new sims have a wider timeframe than 2009-2019, those would surely benefit from someone running older or newer timetabling through them prior to release ? That does not necessarily mean release of the finished user full timetable coincident with the sim, just checking out that trains across the timespan can run with acceptable compromise.

That is not lots of full-blown eras for every slight track tweak and the testing angst that generates, but consideration of 'easy-eras' with collars (mainly for older TT) and electrification (for newer TT).

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SimSig Life 14/02/2024 at 12:00 #155331
Stephen Fulcher
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How can you write a “user” timetable without the sim? Certainly cannot test it.
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SimSig Life 14/02/2024 at 18:22 #155349
bill_gensheet
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That is why 'user' is in inverted commas.
Not bundled with the sim, so available as user timetable
Written with the sim pre-release, tests the bits a GHD does not reach, and only needing a final check once the sim goes public in case any late sim changes break it.

Specifically I was thinking of the Stourbridge 1975 TT I did with you, or the Scottish TT's with Peter.

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SimSig Life 14/02/2024 at 20:23 #155350
HST125Scorton
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When I was helping with the development of the Preston Simulation, I created 3 of my own timetables based on the 2018-2020 era using accurate data from Trust., one random weekday think was a Wednesday, a Saturday and a Sunday. I used my own three to test the simulations and bug tracking by logging everything. I found quite a few bugs and TC/Signal issues but they were fixed for another testing period. The Sunday timetable introduced workings that used the less common lines and point sets. I provided them to the testing team as well, so they could use them while I used there etc. To this date I still have all three of these timetables and the old .sim file of Preston which obvs won't work after many loader updates and no license to even just allow me to update them timetable to current modern standards etc.
Aaron (AJRO) | Timetable Writer
Last edited: 14/02/2024 at 20:24 by HST125Scorton
Reason: None given

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SimSig Life 14/02/2024 at 21:14 #155353
flabberdacks
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GeoffM in post 155327 said:
[quote=andi;post=155316]
One thing we do sometimes find out when we release a previous-unannounced sim is that somebody pops up and says things along the lines of "I am/was a signaller there!". Certainly that situation is a negative that could be remedied by announcing forthcoming simulations - if not early on, then at least when we get to an advanced state in the timeline.

FWIW my interests lie east of London in one direction, and further southwest in the other. Probably not too hard to work out. ;-)
On this note,

If anyone reading this works the south coast line in NSW Australia, send me a PM if you like.

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SimSig Life 14/02/2024 at 22:01 #155355
traindriver17
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Maybe Stratford and Eastleigh?
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